8 Tips for First Time Dads

By Chris Wilson
Dad with son on his shoulders

There can be a lot of trepidation and anxiety for new fathers, especially for those who have never been around babies. But rather than let the fear win, new dads should look forward to the experience and embrace each passing day. The time will fly by and everyone will realize that, in the end, there was really nothing to fear.

Here are a few helpful tips to get new dads running as soon as those baby booties touch tiny toes.

Hold the Baby

Don’t hesitate. The moment you see that child, you will fall in love and all of the anxiety you had prior to delivery will be gone.

Learn to change diapers before the arrival

A guy can feel silly learning diaper changes on a doll or asking a friend or relative to teach him how to change a child’s diaper. But, everyone learns best from hand-on experience. Change a few diapers before your child is born and everybody, including mother and child, will benefit from your experience.

Be a partner to your spouse

Whether that means handling a couple of 3 a.m. feedings each week or just soothing the crying baby, every bit that you can pitch in will help your spouse recover and maintain sanity.

Housework can always wait until tomorrow

Newborns don’t stay tiny forever, so embrace the time you have. Sometimes picking up chores that are normally not yours is an option. Your family will function
much better from flexibility. If something is falling by the wayside, let your spouse know that it’s alright. There will be a period (possibly several months) of adjustment before your family returns to anything resembling normalcy.

If help is needed, just ask for some advice

Hopefully, there are people around who can provide some wisdom. Whether it’s your own father or father-in-law, a brother or friend who has children or your child’s pediatrician, it’s easier to ask than to guess.

A baby is portable

Remember that it really is not that hard to take a baby certain places, whether it’s a trip to the grocery store or a weekend getaway. Before most dads know it, they’re chasing that child everywhere. So, take advantage of living while the baby relies on adults to move around.

Don’t forget the honeymoon

The baby will probably be spoiled, but remember to maintain the romance with your spouse. If possible, go the extra mile to make Mom feel special and beautiful. It’s possible that Mom will encounter some postpartum depression, feel overwhelmed or she might fret about weight she added during pregnancy. The occasional surprise of flowers or whatever she enjoys most will take a small effort on your part, but will go a long way toward showing how much you care.

Most of all – have fun

There is nothing to fear, especially when it comes to a little crying and a few dirty diapers.

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